A Balanced and Biblical View of Women
Bulletin Article - Sunday, May 10, 2020
We're always searching for the balanced and biblical view on any topic. We want God's answers on the means of salvation, worship, Christian living, and the proper treatment of others, etc. When it comes to the subject of women (as with men) we need biblical answers. We have doctrinal instruction on the subject of women found in the New Testament. There are examples and teaching in the Old Testament where we find application and instruction as well (Romans 15:4).
The "virtuous woman" comes to mind in any study of the characteristics of biblical womanhood. After reading Proverbs 31, we come away with a view of women not always appreciated in our world today. She's described as a hard worker who supports and honors her husband, provides for the needs of her family in a variety of ways. She works with her hands using her talents. She buys and sells property. She helps the needy. She's a woman of wisdom and accomplishments. The Hebrew word translated "virtuous" is also translated "worthy," "strong," "valiant," and "mighty."
A powerful example of this kind of woman is Deborah, the only woman judge. She judged God's people for 40 years. Her courage and faith were demonstrated when she convinced a reluctant man, Barak, to join her on the battlefield and take on the army of the Canaanites (Judges 4).
Esther goes down in Jewish history as a woman of powerful faith and courage. She played a pivotal part in saving God's people from destruction. She seized the opportunity to stand before the most powerful people of her time to plead on behalf of her people. She selflessly took her own life into her hands to save many.
The list of faithful, courageous, obedient women of the Old Testament is long. Many are found in the great examples of faith in Hebrews 11, like Sarah, Rahab, and others generally listed. Not to forget the mothers of the great kings of Israel and Judah; Hezekiah's mother was Abijah and Josiah's was Jedidah. The upbringing of these men played a vital role in the godly kings they became. Consider the lengthy description of the virtuous woman in Proverbs 31. Verse one says, "The words of King Lemuel, the utterance which his mother taught him.
In Acts 16 we find Lydia, another example godliness and obedience. She was a traveling businesswoman—successful and evidently well off. She became a Christian when she heard the preaching of Paul and Silas. She immediately demonstrated her Christian character with love and hospitality toward her new spiritual family.
Priscilla, a Christian woman in the early church, was a partner in the family business, as well as teaching the truths of God's word (Acts 18). In the New Testament church there are limitations in a woman's teaching over a man (1 Timothy 1:11-15), but woman have both the right and responsibility to be with their husbands (and elsewhere) in teaching, as long as they follow these biblical guidelines.
The women who went to the tomb of Jesus and found it empty were told by the angels to go tell his disciples that Christ had risen (Matthew 28:1-8). They were chosen by God to be the first to know and proclaim Jesus' resurrection. Christian women today have the privilege and responsibility of telling people about our risen Savior and King.
A balanced and biblical view of women reveals the importance of women in society, the family, and the church. Although women are commanded "to be discreet, chaste, homemakers..." (Titus 2:5) and to join with their husbands in bringing up their children "in the training and admonition of the Lord" (Ephesians 6:1-4; cf. Eunice and Lois 2 Timothy 1 :5), women still have responsibilities outside the home, in teaching the gospel and dong the works of faith and influence. God bless our women! —Chris